The Chairperson and Sectoral Representatives of the Provincial Agrarian Reform Coordinating Committee
124 landholdings equivalent to 993 hectares located in the municipalities of Bulan and Pilar were recommended for removal from the Comprehensive Agrarian Reform Program Extension with Reform Land Acquisition and Distribution (CARPER LAD) Balance of Sorsogon.
The removal of said problematic landholdings was recommended through a resolution by the Provincial Agrarian Reform Coordinating Committee (PARCCOM) in Sorsogon to Presidential Agrarian Reform Council (PARC).
PAR Officer Roseller R. Olayres, who chairs the Provincial Task Force on Problematic Landholdings in Sorsogon said that above 18 percent of the 124 landholdings are situated in slopes, are cogonal and not suited to agriculture.
“The landholdings are also recommended for removal because they fall under landowner’s retention on co-owners with eroded portion, have duplicated Operation Land Transfer (OLT) with registered Emancipation Patent (EP), are under actual cultivation by the landowner’s children, and within unclassified public forest,” said Olayres.
Aside from said reasons, there are also landholdings whose landowners died prior to CARP. Also, some of the landholdings were already converted to fishpond and nipa plantation, others were reacquired/redeemed by landowner from mortgagee, while some others are with free patent title in the name of a particular person registered after the implementation of CARP on October 24, 1998.
Some other landholdings are now used as barangay hall, chapel, and school site, while there are those already subdivided into several lots and being occupied by its new owners/buyers.
Olayres further said that aside from these lands in Bulan and Pilar towns, another 121 landholdings are being recommended by the Municipal Agrarian Reform Officers (MAROs) in Castilla, Gubat Cluster, and Magallanes to be also deductible from the CARPER LAD balance for the same reasons.
As per MC No.8, series of 2010, the PARCCOM is tasked to deliberate and issue resolution for exclusion of landholdings found to be deductible for CARPER LAD Balance. If however, there are tenants in the subject landholdings, it will be subjected to a leasehold contract to be worked out by the MAROs and Legal Officers.
While the Department of Agrarian Reform (DAR) is busy completing the CARPER LAD Balance, the PARCCOM’s Provincial Sectoral Representatives (PSR) of farmers, landowners, NGOs, People’s Organizations, Indigenous People, and Agricultural Cooperatives continue their monitoring activity and assistance to other CARP related matters.
Some of the projects they are currently monitoring are the agri-cash project of Saint Anne Family Service Cooperative (SAFSCO), Gabao Samahang Nayon Multi-purpose Development Cooperative (GASANAMUDECO) and the construction of permanent river control all in Irosin town; the Farm-to-Market Road (FMR) project in Hidhid, Matnog; the 15-M worth construction of irrigation open canal in Pulog, Balete, Bacon in Sorsogon City.
Other activities that the PSRs conducted include attendance to the consultative meeting of Local Coconut Industry Development Council in Magallanes town where they oriented the council on how to holster the economic enhancement of ARC cooperative specifically on developing a coconut sugar industry cottage.
Still more livelihood seminars have been attended by PSRs which in turn will also be introduced to farmer-families as part of their yearning to uplift their living condition. Furthermore, they are also monitoring and assisting some legal cases that involve farmers, such as ejection and harassment cases.
Meanwhile, aside from completing the CARPER LAD Balance, DAR is also focused on the implementation of the three major program of CARP: the Land Tenure and Improvement (LTI), the Program Beneficiaries Development (PBD), and the Agrarian Justice Delivery (AJD), PARCCOM monitors all the above-mentioned activities in Sorsogon. (BARecebido, PIA Sorsogon/AJA-DAR)